The fun stuff
NSW Government
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Condoms are the only form of contraception that protect against both pregnancy and STIs. Knowing how to use them is super important, which is why we’ve compiled a handy list of dos and don’ts.

Condoms – the ‘dos’

  • Do practice using condoms when you masturbate, if you’re new to using them 
  • Do try different brands and styles to see what feels and fits best for you
  • Do carry condoms with you all the time – it’s great to be prepared
  • Do check the expiry date before you put one on
  • Do put the condom on before the action starts
  • Do use water-based lube to reduce the chance of the condom breaking, and to make sex feel even better
  • Do use a flavoured condom for oral sex too
  • Do put a new condom on each time you switch between oral, vaginal and anal sex
  • Do use condoms on sex toys and change them- especially if you’re sharing toys

Condoms are the only form of contraception that protect against pregnancy and STIs

Condoms – the ‘don’ts’

  • Don’t open the condom packet with your teeth or scissors. You definitely don’t want to tear it
  • Don’t flush used condoms down the toilet. Nobody wants to find a condom on the beach, and fish don’t want them in the ocean
  • Don’t keep condoms in hot places like your car glove-box or wallet
  • Don’t use more than one condom at a time. More condoms doesn’t mean more protection
  • Don’t use condoms that are past their expiry date – they might not keep you safe from STIs and unwanted pregnancy.
  • Don’t use any oil-based products as lube – this means moisturisers and body lotions, cooking oils and Vaseline. They may damage the condom. 
  • Don’t use animal skin condoms – they don’t protect against STIs. If you have an allergy to latex you should try polyurethane condoms instead. 
  • Don’t use a condom more than once. It’s a one-time deal

If you want to know more, phone the NSW Sexual Health Infolink on 1800 451 624 between 9:00am and 5:30pm Monday to Friday to talk with a sexual health nurse. It’s confidential and free if you call from a landline.